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Growing appetite for ethical finance

Triodos Bank sees record increase in lending of £34 million for the first six months of 2010

22-07-2010 | Triodos Bank, the global leader in ethical and sustainable banking, today announced growth to its UK lending of 14 per cent during the first half of 2010. Loans to customers including the Glastonbury festival's Michael Eavis have enabled the bank to increase its total UK lending to £282m, a £34m net increase on the end of 2009. The results mean Triodos is set to perform significantly better than last year, when the bank's lending grew by 20 per cent or £41m over the year. Triodos Bank, which this month marks 15 years in the UK, has pioneered an ethical, transparent and sustainable banking model, and only finances organisations that deliver social, environmental or cultural benefits.  

Key UK figures for 2010:

  • Triodos' UK loan book grew by 14 per cent (£34m) to £282m in the six months of 2010
  • Gross new loans paid out were nearly £42m in the first half of 2010
  • The  figures to date represent 150 per cent of the total growth achieved in 2008 and is already 80 per cent of the total growth achieved in 2009

Dr Bevis Watts, head of business banking at Triodos said: "We forecast that our lending would grow by 30 per cent over the course of 2010 so the half year results show how we are on track to achieve that growth. Our banking model means that this growth in our lending is supporting real social and environmental change, at a time when such issues are in danger of falling off the agenda.

"Although the economic climate and political uncertainty has had an impact on demand for lending, we have delivered significant new lending and also replenished our commitments to lend, which still exceed £150m. And against the background of deep cuts in public sector spending we want to continue to support our customers through difficult times and find innovative new ways of financing social and environmental projects.

"Indeed, the current economic turmoil presents a wide range of opportunities for social and environmental organisations and we are committed to supporting their visions."

Lending by sector
Growth in social lending:

  • Lending and commitments to social organisations such as charities, social enterprises, housing associations and healthcare organisations grew 13 per cent in the first six months of 2010  
  • Lending to housing associations (12.2 per cent increase) and to healthcare organisations (10.4 per cent increase) were the largest single areas of growth
  • Triodos Bank's lending and commitments to social organisations now exceeds £225m

Growth in environment lending:

  • Lending to environmental businesses and organisations grew by 23 per cent to £90m
  • Lending and commitments now total almost £150m, with strong growth continuing particularly in renewable energy projects
  • The main areas of growth were on-shore wind energy and in-vessel composting facilities
  • This year Triodos also financed its first UK solar project at Glastonbury Festival's Worthy Farm  

Growth in farming, food and trade:

  • Lending to food, farming and trading businesses grew by 10 per cent to a total of almost £58m 
  • Mixed organic farming (24.2 per cent increase) and organic poultry and egg production (10 per cent increase) were large contributors to this growth
  • Triodos Bank in the UK now has over 250 loans totalling nearly £40m to organic farms

Lending in Scotland and Wales

Scotland

  • Lending in Scotland grew by 16 per cent in the first half of 2010 to £43m
  • Renewable energy, organic food and farming, and art and culture were the three main areas of growth

Wales

  • Lending and commitments in Wales grew by 59 per cent with our Welsh loan book now totalling £23m for the first time
  • On-shore wind was the largest area of growth and included an £8m loan to a new wind farm (Wern Ddu) in north Wales
  • Triodos Bank anticipates further strong growth in Wales, particularly in social housing

Triodos uses money saved by its customers to finance organisations that benefit people or the environment. New customers to borrow from Triodos Bank this year include Amnesty International, which will finance their new Irish headquarters, Amnesty House in Dublin, and Glastonbury Festival's Michael Eavis, to whom Triodos is providing a £500,000 loan to fund the installation of the UK's largest solar roof on top of a barn at his Worthy Farm in Somerset.

Michael Eavis said: "Because we share the same values, Triodos Bank was my first consideration for the loan and I am grateful it is able to help finance the scheme and invest in the potential of solar for future energy generation."

To find out more about Triodos Bank's range of banking services, visit www.triodos.co.uk or call free on 0500 008 720.
ENDS

Notes to editors
For more information, case studies, customer quotes, or to arrange interviews, please contact: Sophie Rivett-Carnac on 07855 834 430 - sophie@greenhousepr.com

Triodos Bank only finances enterprises which create social, environmental or cultural added value. Key sectors include organic food and farming, renewable energy, social housing, and fair trade. Transparency is a core value: customers are informed about the bank's lending and can target their savings to particular areas of investment. A range of personal savings accounts is offered, and full banking services are available for businesses and charities. Triodos Bank is an independent bank founded in the Netherlands in 1980. Its principles and independence are protected through a special shareholding trust. The UK branch opened in 1995 and is based in Bristol.

 

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